Friday, July 17, 2009

This is tougher than I thought

It's Friday evening and a few minutes ago a gang of kiter's dropped by to see how I was doing. Dan, Kristin, Kyle, Rijk, Luca, Michael all wanted to see my "problem." So a little later, when Sara came by, she took a few shots. Here's what I looked like.

Here's the front view and

here's the back.

When everyone started leaving they said they were going to "Zero's" today, up by Leo Carrillo State Beach. I was thinking of driving up and taking pictures but my nurse said I can't go out in the sun. Maybe next week.

Thanks for all the calls, texts and emails.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Shingles, I thought it's part of a roof.

The morning after the down-winder to Huntington I mentioned to Ruth that I had a rash on my right shoulder. She took one look and said, "We need to see a doctor." "What, it's only a rash." She said, "It doesn't look like a rash to me."

So we grabbed some reading material and we sat in the dermatologist office for an hour or so until we were worked in to Dr. Gammer's schedule.

Once in the patients waiting room, I sat there thinking I was going to get some salve. When Dr. G entered the room and saw my rash he took out his 35mm camera, took a picture and said, "This is a classic case of Shingles." "What??? Huh??? Me????"

When I left his office I had perscriptions for four medicines and was ordered to bed. He said, "Think of it as though you have a virus. No sun, no alcohol, stay in bed, drink plenty of water and lots of rest." "Doc, I just did a fun down-winder and now I want more." "Sorry Jim."

Ok, how did I spend the day? I started out by watching the Tour de France this morning at 6 A.M., followed by watching Fox News, a little on-line computer time, then a Dodger baseball game and some more computer time. This day went by REALLY SLOW. I also had no idea Vin Scully called the entire baseball game my himself. I thought there were other guys that helped him out. I guess not, maybe they are all dead. Who know?

Don't look unless you have a strong stomach.

I know this looks terrible but here it is in person, "Introducing Mr. Shingles." Yuck...

Ok, it's back to bed and more news, then the Tonight Show.

I think tomorrow I'll get some movies.

I can't wait until this is over. The doctor said it could last many days, even weeks.
Oh crap!! I'll forget everything I know.....Man, why me?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Down wind adventure to Huntington

Last night (Monday) we started talking about doing a down winder to Huntington Beach. The three that wanted to do it was Rijk, Kyle and me. So that night I sent out a few emails. The next morning, after a number of phone calls and texts it ended up that 5 wanted to do it.

A guy that wanted to go was Gabor from Seal Beach and since we all wanted to start together we were going to start at Belmont Shore.

At about 2:30 it was all set, the wind was strong enough, so Gabor was going to up-wind from Seal Beach to Belmont, we would get together, kite to Seal pick up two other kiters and then to Surfside and so on. We also knew that Klaus was going to get off work arould 3:30, drive his car and meet us at Huntington Beach and bring us home. Lastly I took my cell phone and Gabor had a marine radio just in case.

In just a few minutes Gabor arrived and was ready to go.

Three of the four were ready to go, Gabor, me and Rijk. Unfortunately Kyle had to work.
And Omar? I think he was warming up on the water.

I gave our plan to Omar and he said he might just go as far as Seal.

I'm guessing the time was getting close to 3 o'clock as we headed out for Seal Beach.

In just a snap the four of us were at Seal Beach. We were supposed to meet up with 2 other kiters that wanted to join the adventure but no one ever joined us. Then Omar got out of the water, this was our sign to move to the next beach.

After doing some kiting at Seal we headed for Surfside. I looked back and didn't see Omar. He went in at Seal and the other two guys never came out to join us.

This is a screencap from Google Earth Pro that Omar sent me. This is what he said, "I spent most my time at Seal and Surfside, and in the lee side of the long jetties, particularly Surfside. It was pretty cool, because it's almost impossible to kite there unless you're going downwind. You can see the construction equipment and piles of sand and pipes at the north end of Surfside, where they are depositing the sand to nourish the beaches. It was cool riding in brown water.

When were going back and forth at Surfside and Sunset I think we were holding off making the big decision of going to Huntington unless there was plenty of wind. So at one point we just started heading south. It was Huntington or Bust.

This was the long part of the adventure. You were basically locked in going down wind. Rijk would sometimes goe toe side and one time Gabor came over to me and he had both of his feet on the middle of the board and said to me "Relax."

Klaus said he saw us coming so he put his kite in the air so we could see him.

We came in just long enough for a picture and for Klaus to grab my kite. His 10 was too small for Huntington and he wanted to kite before we left.

Klaus is going out in the surf as Gabor is coming in to rided the waves.

One of the first things we did was grab a beer....mmmmmm.

These were our mode of transportation; Matt's F-One directional, Klaus's twin tip and Gabor's Jeff Kafka course board.

The next challenge was getting all of our gear into Klaus's car. It was a tight fit but we all got home OK.

We dropped off Gabor at Seal Beach and said goodbye and headed for Belmont hoping there was a little wind left....Sorry Charlie, NO wind at Belmont.

Even though we didn't kite very much at Belmont it was great to be home.

As a closing shot I grabbed this one of Ruth and Dan comparing their full head of hair. I can't complain it but they are proud of their hair. Me too.


Sunday, July 12, 2009

Two good days, Saturday & Sunday

Summer is finally here and we had two great days on Saturday & Sunday

As the wind started building on Saturday the kiters showed up to have fun.

As Henry goes on a starbord reach there were plenty of people at Belmont.

Rosemary, my god, I had no idea you were a body builder. That's the end of our arm wrestling.

Darren in the mean time is getting his boobs pierced. Rosemary helps with the tape for protection.

There were a few who wanted to play with his new rings. Ouch!!!!!

Klaus is ready to go on his Bandit Dos 10.

There was enough wind to get some pretty good air too.

Three girls and one guy.....what are the odds????
From the left, Alice, Rosemary, Jake and Emma.

That's the end of Saturday, but before we go don't you think Chloe gets the "Best dressed kite wrapper Award"?????

Sunday was another hot day and lots of people decided to come to Long Beach and enjoy the beach.

Mitch had his work cut out for him today. Lots of bathers, lots of kiters, and a few boaters too.

As Matt come in you can get a sense of the number of kiters that were on the water.

The camp was all set up and Luca enjoyed the view and the chairs.

Dave heads to the water.

Rosemary wanted to try another kite so Rijk let her use his Wainman 12.

Todd told us about going to "Zero's" yesterday and Omar told us about going to the Dominican Republic. He got back 4 days ago. BTW, our next trip to La Ventana is only five months away.

L-r, Ruth, Alexandra, Matt, Dan and Naji. All enjoying the wonderful weather.

L-r, Al, Bobby, Francis and Steve. Francis came to Belmont because of the SCKA meeting at our house tonight.

Rijk gave Rosemary a hand to untangle her kite lines. It happens to the best of us.

The wind died so we all headed over to the house for the meeting.

Al Navas knows how to liven up a party....meeting. Kristin helped lighten his load.

Francis, the President of the Southern California Kiteboard Association, runs the meeting that discussed the August 8th "Capture The Wind" event on the Granada launch ramp.

Ruth joins us for a closing shot. Thank you honey for all the snacks and beverages.

See you on the beach.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Friday, July 10th....Kitesurfari is on the beach

Today was not a great wind day but it was very significant because today Kitesurfari is officially on the beach.

Meet Robert and Danny McCullough, the owners of Kitesurfari. Today was their first day on the beach of Belmont Shore. Welcome, welcome, welcome.

The camp was in full regalia. They brought two pop-up tents and we brought our African Grey. Ruth is playing with Chicka as Juliano (on the far left) is getting ready. Even Bill from Captain Kirk's was there.

One of Kitesurfari's ace instructors was getting a little air. Boy's must have their fun.

Mitch, our Claremont lifeguard, took a well deserved break and climbed aboard one of Kitesurfari's stand-up paddle boards. They are available to rent too.

Rijk, Juliano and I pumped up and went out. Ruth caught Rijk getting a few thrills up in the air. Unfortunately Juliano had a problem with his lines and had to come in.

Last week Matt loaned me his 7 foot F-One directional board. I took it out today and really didn't intend to have an adventure...but I did.

The board was very floaty, but also had three foot pads. Very much like a windsurfer. After a couple of tacks I was able to get behind Chaffee Island. I was trying to catch Arnaud, who has a course race board, but he was so fast I lost him.

As I approached the end of the breakwater wall, the East end, I heard someone yell. I looked up and saw a kite overhead. I thought, "What the frig. Who is that?" When I turned around Gabor Vagi, who was on a course board passed me as he headed out to sea past the wall. He pointed first behind the wall and then pointed West. I pointed in the direction I had just come from and we both set off together.

We went on this port tack as far as we could before the wind started dying out. He did one of his trick turns and I had to drop in the water to change directions. One of these days.

Like ships that pass in the night, Gabor headed back to Seal Beach and I headed back to Belmont. As I was down-winding I could feel the wind dropping, so I just kept swinging my kite as much as I could. It dropped in the water twice, so now it's nice and clean.

I was really glad to be back on the beach and not have to be could happen. Later Gabor texted me and said "Just time on the water...and you will kick some butt." It was really a fun adventure today.

It was then end of the day and time to go home. I'm sure I'll feel it in the morning. Thanks Matt for the loan of the board, it was a lot of fun.